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In case of emergency!

I always have to make sure i have a way that i can get myself out of trouble? Are you like that?

Its not always possible i know that but I like to make sure that if i needed to get out of somewhere i could. When i travelled around Canada back when there were dinosaurs wondering the earth;). I wasnt the most flush of students, didnt land a cushy job that paid really well. On the contrary i found myself doing a whole host of weird and wonderful jobs just to find a quick buck. But even though i didnt have loads of money I always knew that i had access to some funds if i needed it. Largely thanks to my very understanding parents!:)

Travelling is obviously a very glam reason to need a little extra injection of cash but then there are also the boring everyday ones. What i call boring spending. Thats the sort of stuff like…’the car needs a new whatever’ or the ‘guttering needs to be replaced’ There is no joy in spending money on those things in my opinion but if you want to drive yourself from a to b and you dont want your windows to leak then you need to get those jobs done! Its not sexy but when your car has broken down you would usually give anyone anything to get it going and get you home right? Back in the time BK (before kids) we owned a fabulous camper van. It was a special part of the family and we had some fun journeys in that van, all be it pretty slow. One particularly long and hot journey back from Devon we noticed it was really starting to struggle on hills and my OH took it to his trusty mechanic when we got home. Only to be dealt the blow that the engine was pretty much dead and we would have to buy a new engine. Not cheap. As Oh was using it for work, we had to find the money to fix it but after that little stunt and the arrival of our number one kid it was time to send Floyd onto better things and people with deeper pockets! I dont think our girls have forgiven us that only their brother got to ride in Floyd.:)

I think then as a young adult i didn’t think about the possible emergencies I might have found myself in. Back then an emergency might have been not being able to find somewhere to eat on a saturday night in an incredibly sleepy canadian city. But now, as a parent with responsibilities there are all manor of emergencies i can imagine! Sometimes there are times when within our own resources we might not be able to meet the need and we have to, responsibly, get some help.

 

 

 

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Anyone for Chocolate? #thorntonsreview

I was asked at the beginning of the summer if i would like to review a hamper from Thorntons….

Um….

Im sorry but does the man in the white hat carry rosary beads?

:)

We were lucky enough to receive a beautiful personalised hamper of goodies from Thorntons. Packaged in an enourmous and very exciting looking box. There may have been some squealing.

Opening the heavy wait presentation box is a thing of joy and there was pretty much something for everyone in there.

 

It is a good sized box and when it arrives it has a real feeling of luxury about it.

Included in the box are:

  • Personalisable Chocolate Alphabet Truffles (22 cup truffles)
  • Continental Milk, White & Dark Signature (300g)
  • Classics Milk Signature (276g)
  • Moments (250g)
  • Classics Favourite Puddings (180g)
  • Bag of Smiles (160g)
  • Classics Milk Caramel Bag (103g)
  • Classics Dark Caramel Bag (103g)
  • Classics Almond Marzipan Bag (107g)
  • Classics Dark Ginger Bag (98g)
  • Continental Viennese Bar
  • Continental Lemon Bar
  • Continental Alpini Ba

I had to be quick to get some myself as there was a frantic rush for some of the favourites. My OH was very impressed with some of the flavoured caramels, in particular the ginger flavoured. The kids loved the chocolate buttons or bag of smiles which are really cute. Our personalised truffles have been used for a certain birthday!

Really a beautiful gift for a chocolate lover and reasonably priced as well!!

 

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Fun on a rainy day!

With September just around the corner, it’s about time I accepted that I’m not going to be able to take my kids to the beach everyday. As a mother of five, it can be a nightmare thinking of ways to keep my brood entertained, but I thought to myself one day while I was going through my closet – there are a whole bunch of ways to keep them amused at home! So I thought I’d share my wisdom with you on just how you can adopt these tried and tested methods without throwing away the cash.

 Dig out those old board games

 A board game is for life, not just for Christmas – sometimes we forget just how fun a little good old fashioned competition can be. Next time you’re having a little clean up, look in the back of the closet and you’ll probably catch sight of those old board games that have been gathering dust since Christmas. Dust them off, sit your kids down and battle your wits – whether it’s Dungeons and Dragons or Hungry Hippos, I guarantee hours of fun!

 Play dress up

Be honest with yourself – are you ever going to wear that bikini you’ve been hoarding since 1995? As the summer ends it’s a great time to give your closet a bit of a clear out, but that doesn’t mean your kids can’t have a little fun in the process. Clothes you’re going to throw out make for great dressing up outfits – see if you can make a theme, like princes and princesses, or perhaps you can even keep the older kids amused as you explain just what exactly the purpose of a leg warmer is!

Create a fantasy world

While you’re clearing out that closet, have you taken a look at any of your old bedsheets recently? Kids, in my experience, love to create their own little worlds, and nothing does this better than creating a fortress. Give them a few beaten up bedsheets to create walls, or use cushions, couches and even mattresses to make a fort – your kids can truly have their own castle without having to slay any dragons.

Be honest with yourself – are you ever going to wear that bikini you’ve been hoarding since 1995? As the summer ends it’s a great time to give your closet a bit of a clear out, but that doesn’t mean your kids can’t have a little fun in the process. Clothes you’re going to throw out make for great dressing up outfits – see if you can make a theme, like princes and princesses, or perhaps you can even keep the older kids amused as you explain just what exactly the purpose of a leg warmer is!

 Create a fantasy world

While you’re clearing out that closet, have you taken a look at any of your old bedsheets recently? Kids, in my experience, love to create their own little worlds, and nothing does this better than creating a fortress. Give them a few beaten up bedsheets to create walls, or use cushions, couches and even mattresses to make a fort – your kids can truly have their own castle without having to slay any dragons.

Have a little mommy time

If all that fantasy play fun has taken it out of you, CasinoSagaFans.com is the perfect way of putting your feet up once the kids have hit the hay. It’s got a huge selection of games featuring trolls, dwarves and princesses, so it might even serve as a little inspiration for the next fantasy game you play with your kids!

So there you have it – the lazy mommy’s guide to making a fantasy world out of the simplest household objects. Just make sure you’ve got a Prince Charming on hand when things get a little too out of hand!

 

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Its a pyjama party! #stuckonyou

Last year we were lucky enough to get the chance to review a great lunchbox from Stuck on You. It has lasted the whole year of pack ups every day and our little girl has loved using it. Helped that her best friend ordered one too!:)So i was delighted to review another one of the company’s products this year. We went for a less school item and more a relaxed, duvet day  item and its safe to say that with my youngest it has been a real hit.

It is a sweet little cotton tee and pyjama shorts that arrived in perfect timing for when the temperatures started to go up and bedtimes were a little tricky in the heat. You can choose from different colours but my little girlie girl chose pink. The it comes to the very serious business of what to have as the motif on the t shirt. Be warned there are a LOT of options and so your little one could take quite a long time deciding!:)

My little girl was having a bit of a thing with Ice-creams lately..who can blame her? So i guessed that it might be a favourite with her. She calls them ‘lolly-ices’ which is a very scouse term that has taken us a good while to get used to. It adds a real personal touch, choosing the design and the font and gets them involved in choosing which is VERY important part of my daughter’s day. I haven’t had any influence over what she will wear for a long time!!;)

The top easily doubles as a regular tee shirt for the day and i even think you can get away withe the cute little cotton shorts in the day too! Id quite like a pair they looks so comfy!! Soft brushed cotton with a little tie to the waist, ideal if you still have a little one in pull ups at night.

It was love at first sight for our littlest girl. She gets a lot of hand-me-downs as the fourth girl and very rarely gets anything new. Which is fine and how it should likely be in a family with so many siblings. The best form of recycling. But occasionally its nice to have a treat and this little set was most assuredly that for her.

On these longer days of summer its lovely to be able to lounge around a bit more and take your time facing the day and she looks so comfy in these jammies. Though it does have to be said my daughter doesnt do an whole lot of ‘lounging’ at any time of the day! She is full throttle ahead most of the time. Looks like these jammies are well up for that job though!!

Shame they don’t do they in an adult size!!:)

 

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October 13, 2014 - 2:52 pm

Louise Fairweather - lovely pics x

Senior school starter 2014

Our back to school this year has been a little bit different. Firstly there is the fact that my eldest son has now left primary school and is just about to start seniors and secondly there is the fact that we are soon to be moving to Australia and life will be a bit upside down for a while!!

But before that happens, September marches towards us and its time to start thinking back to school. I am keen on using second hand shops at schools and often a school will have a really good facility for picking up some spares. As my son is going to seniors it is a whole other uniform. The kind that means you have to go to one of those ‘special’ uniform shops that stocks all the various sports kits and lab coats and aprons that are required by the school. I have always wondered at whether it would be better to have the american style of non uniform as a secondary school uniform complete kit out probably costs in the region of £200 per child. My son’s school has three separate sports kits!! Im sure we didnt have more than one when we were at school!! I cant work out why the shorts that he wears for football can’t work for athletics??

But then if kids wear their own clothes then you have to buy more of them..maybe? I dont know. I do love the kids all kitted out smartly in their uniforms but its can be pretty steep and surely for some it is a real struggle.

So we ventured into a uniform shop last week. I was keen to not leave it till the end of the summer. Over the years we have noticed a few of the uniform stockist in the city having lengthy queues of bored kids and annoyed parents trying to squeeze in all their purchases into that last bank holiday weekend before the kids go back to school. So i was keen to not have that experience… So i dragged my very uninterested son into the local uniform outfitters, armed with a list of things to get and also some sage advice from other mums who already have boys at the school. Its good to get a heads up especially when it comes to stuff that might get rarely used and so isnt worth us spending out on.

Blazer first. The school has houses and so we have to go for a certain colour badge. Easy to do, the staff know the school well and so son was forced into one that i thought was fine. Yeah. looks good i said to him. Ah you need to have the jumper underneath i was told by shop assistant. So wool jumper and blazer (is this because schools cannot afford heating anymore?) Onto the numerous sports kits. Rugby. Football and athletics….the athletics kit looks like something from chariots of fire and my son actually cracked a smile while i giggled at him trying to get into it in the pint sized changing room! Then black and white shorts, tie, DT apron (did i want white or beige? Does anyone choose ANYTHING in beige!!), a few name bands and the rugby top. I can’t imagine my son playing rugby!!

It was all pretty painless and i think as we were there in the first week of august there were only a couple of other people in the shop.

As we walked out of the shop back to the car. My OH and the other kids were waiting inside the car, my son turned to me and asked me if going shopping for uniform had put me off going shopping for anything else. He was secretly hoping i think. But we had to go onwards and shop for shoes!!!

I try and get the kids shoes from good quality shops. With our school shoe bill being quite high I try and make sure that the kids can get at least a few terms out of their shoes. My son is now a scary size 5. Just one size more and I can wear his shoes! He is having such a growth spurt at the moment! He generally still goes for slip ons, its all about ease with him. But my girls like the more traditional T bar type shoes. Although my eldest daughter is keen on the ‘slip on’ type ballet pump. Which is great but she has a super narrow foot and so many of the shoes she tries on in generic sizes and widths are just too wide for her and fall off her feet. So we always find ourselves heading to Clarks as they do cater for such a range of width fittings.

The rest of our day was a family outing to Clarks, being measured on the cool little machines they use now and then a mammoth trying on session! Phew it is enough to test even the most ardent shopper! Shoes shopping done and then it was time for a treat in the form of a Krispy Kreme Donut for everyone.:)

It looks like we are getting all set for September!

 

 

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September 23, 2014 - 9:45 pm

Suzanne Whitton - Goodness, look how crazily grown up your boy looks! I hope he gets on brilliantly at Secondary School – such a big step. x x

November 3, 2014 - 2:11 pm

Kim Rix Photography - Beautiful portrait. Good looking boy you’ve got there!

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